Best Dressed! 32 of Our Favorite Wedding Gowns From Real Brides

From plunging necklines to clean, modern lines, here are some of our favorite bridal looks from real weddings.

Recently engaged and about to start your wedding dress shopping journey? Some of the best places to find inspo for your special day, especially when it comes to fashion and trends, is browsing through real weddings. And, since we’ve been publishing DMV-area weddings for a long time now, we know a thing or two when we see a gown that deserves the spotlight. So, we took a dive through our plethora of beautiful real wedding and plucked the best of the very best of our favorite wedding dresses. Take a look below and see if you can choose a favorite.

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Our Favorite Classic Wedding Dresses

Photo by Finn Lively Photography

Nicki’s modest high-neck and elegant A-line silhouette wedding dress is a perfect choice for evoking a timeless and classic bridal look. This dress also earns double the fashion points because it includes pockets! See more of her Charlottesville wedding here.

Photo by K. Thompson Photography

Kathryn’s long-sleeved satin ball gown was perfect for her timeless wedding at DC’s Carnegie Institution for Science.

Photo by Nichole Meredith Photography

Ashley’s paired her sophisticated and chic fit-n-flare gown with a fur bolero wrap and crystal embellished sash. It’s a definite must-see for brides who have a classic wedding-day style.

Photo by Kristen Gardner Photography

This Monique Lhuillier gown featured the most gorgeous bowed-back. Check out the rest of Kate’s stunning classic bridal look here.

Photo by Birds of a Feather Photography

Taylor’s custom-made lace ball gown is what classic bridal style dreams are made of. Her wedding took place at DC’s Cosmos Club and also included other steal-worthy timeless details and ideas.

Photo by Caroline Lima Photography

Lane swooned in a custom Elizabeth Fillmore gown, which featured an illusion lace neckline and a relaxed, figure-hugging silk-satin skirt. She also switched into rain boots to take portraits at her marshy venue setting. See more of Lane’s Eastern shore wedding here.

Jessica Schneider

Photo by Genevieve Leiper Photography

Jessica’s ROMONA New York wedding dress definitely enhanced her DC monument couple portraits. The halter gown even included a black-buttoned back for an extra bit of sophisticated drama. See more of her classic wedding here.

Photo by Jen Fariello Photography

Christine’s classic Sareh Nouri gown featured an elegant and sophisticated A-line silhouette and off-the-shoulder sleeves. See more of her wedding-day look, which took place at the Congressional Country Club here.

Our Favorite Romantic Wedding Dresses

Photo by Kurstin Roe Photography

Christina’s flutter sleeves designed by Kathryn Conover is a romantic dream. Not to mention the illusion lace detailing. Check out Christina’s elegant farmhouse wedding to see more of this beauty.

Photo by Raif Rucker Productions

Lisa opted for a glamorous ruffle-and-lace Lazaro gown, which oozed romance and style. Check out her two-day American-Eritrean wedding to see more of this stunning bridal look.

Photo by Regeti’s Photography

Ariana’s glitzy Berta gown included a plunging neckline and other swoon-worthy details. See the rest of her weekend-long wedding here.

Photo by Laura’s Focus Photography

Angie accessorized her romantic wedding gown with a detachable skirt. The back detailing of her dress is also a must-see. The whole look paired perfectly at her waterfront soirée.

Photo by Lieb Photographic

Niyati’s layered tulle skirt ball gown, was made for a romantic-inspired wedding. See more of her magical weekday wedding here.

Photo by Mason Photography

Hana’s sleeved gown adorned with lace and beaded embellishments is a great option for those looking for a romantic-styled wedding dress. Check out her full wedding here.

Photo by Feather & Fawn Photography

Rebecca’s Ines Di Santo’s gown feels like it was plucked straight from of a fairytale. See the details of their big day, inspired a collection of Blue Willow china, here.

Our Favorite Fashion-Forward Wedding Dresses

Photo by Elisa Bricker

Meredith’s Dolce & Gabbana wowed us. She wore the playful flower-filled number at her micro-wedding that took place at The Goodstone Inn.

Photo by Les Loups

Geneva’s trendy asymmetrical satin gown with ruching detailing definitely is one of our favorite dresses. She also donned a fishtail braid to further enhance her fashion-forward bridal style. Check out her wedding (and more photos of her gown) here.

Terri Baskin Photography

Loreal custom designed her oh-so fashionable blush-colored wedding dress to include a cape, veil, and overskirt. See more of her DC wedding here.

Photo by Kimberly Florence Photography

Alexandra wore two gorgeous gowns at her DAR wedding, but in our opinion it was her ultra-stylish Vera Wang ceremony dress that stole the show.

Photo by Elizabeth Fogarty Photography

Erica rocked a crystal-covered bodice mermaid gown that also featured jeweled off-the-shoulder detailing. It paired wonderfully with her glam-inspired DC wedding.

Photo by KPC + Co. Photography

Despite having to hold a micro-wedding due to the pandemic, Becca made sure to make a fashion statement for her DC nuptials.  She wore an adorable floral-print, tea-length gown and accessorized with red heels—proving that intimate weddings can still be wow-worthy.

Photo by Tunji Studio

Danique’s wore two custom wedding dresses for her lavish day, but her reception gown definitely was one of our favorite fashion-forward bridal looks. It was not only glamorous, but included a sexy high slit for an extra wow factor.

Our Favorite Boho Wedding Dresses

Photo by Luck Love Photography

Sudha’s boho-inspired gown featured an illusion lace halter neckline and relaxed silhouette. See more of her wedding-day look here.

Photo by An Endless Pursuit

Featuring lace crochet and fringe detailing, Andrea’s Rue de Seine gown is the definition of boho-chic style. See more here.



Kirsten’s sleeved lace gown was a hit at her rustic-themed wedding. She exchanged “I dos” overlooking rolling hills and then switched into a jean jacket, pictured above courtesy of Maddy Williams Photography, for her barn reception.


Photo by Elizabeth McConeghey

Sara’s sweater and tulle skirt combo easily evokes a laid-back bohemian style. Her look suited her intimate vibe, too since she and her partner decided to elope. See more of their elopement here.

Our Favorite Modern/Minimalist Wedding Dresses

Photo by Amy Smith Photography

While Jackie didn’t opt for a traditional wedding dress for her special day, her modern and minimalistic two-piece pantsuit is still one of our favorites. Especially if you’re looking for a contemporary bridal look.


Photo by Kristen Gardner Photography

While Nell’s gown also gives off a romantic vibe, it’s clean detailing and relaxed silhouette also fits a modern, minimalistic aesthetic. See her rainy countryside wedding here for more photos of her bridal look.

Photo by Kristen Gardner Photography

Emma’s Ines Di Santo gown not only included an open back, but it’s modern high-neck and zero embellishments makes this wedding dress perfect for a bride with a minimalist fashion style. Their wedding featured a modern citrus-theme that is a must-see, too.

Photo by Sarah Bradshaw Photography

Kate’s Oscar de la Renta’s  modern and clean halter gown was a show stopper at her very fashionable wedding. Check out the rest of her big day, which includes oh-so chic stripped bridesmaid dresses and more.

Photo by Jennie‌ ‌Raff Photography‌

Sarah’s wedding-day look definitely reminds us of the queen (or should we say Duchess) of minimalist style, Meghan Markle. Don’t you agree? Check out Sarah’s full wedding here to see more of chic and modern gown.

Photo Carly Romeo & Co

Last, but certainly not the least, is this modern jumpsuit, which was worn at an anniversary photo shoot. Check out both Bethany and Ashleigh’s looks here for more bridal inspo.

Assistant Editor, Washingtonian Weddings

Jacqueline comes to Washingtonian with close to five years of digital content experience and SEO best practices. She previously was a senior editorial associate at WeddingWire, specializing in wedding fashion, and before that, an assistant at Vow Bride. Originally from Norfolk, Virginia, she now lives in Columbia Heights.